A cup of coffee during the day has become a necessity for many. Currently, there are approximately 2.25 billion cups of coffee consumed worldwide each day. Over the course of the next five years, Starbucks Corporation plans on opening at least 1,500 new locations in the United States alone. Starbucks hopes to have 20,000 cafes worldwide by 2014. That is a lot of coffee. There is no doubt that Starbucks holds a large marketshare in the coffee industry. At roughly $4 a latte, Starbucks has managed to pull in 11.7 billion in revenue last year.
But is Starbucks the best place to go for your coffee, or is it just a facade of overpriced lattes and sub-par coffee? For the coffee connoisseur where is the best place for a cup of joe, and where is the price most reasonable?
The price of products vary drastically around the world for complex reasons, and coffee is no exception. While the average cup of coffee may seem high coming in at around $3.75 in New York City, it's pennies compared to the average in Moscow totaling $10.19. The winner in this category, however, is a cup of coffee from Indonesia. The coffee beans are around $600 per pound and are partially digested by a small animal known as the palm civet. Many claim that the coffee has a unique flavor with no bitter taste. A cup of this coffee will run you about $50.
On the lower end of the spectrum, roughly 50 cents will get you a standard cup of coffee in Vietnam, and just over $2 will get you a cup of coffee in Argentina. In the past year, the International Coffee Organization reported a drop in the average price of a pound of coffee by 24%. This doesn't mean, however, that the price of indulgent lattes will be decreasing any time soon. With McDonal's entering the coffee business and pricing their cups for just over #1, and between $2 to$4 at Starbucks, it really comes down to a matter of preference when you are choosing where to purchase your coffee.
The coffee connoisseur may argue that money is no object when it comes to enjoying a warm cup of java. Whether you are paying 50 cents or $10 for a cup of coffee, no one wants coffee that is bitter and tastes horrible.
Here are four of the best places to get a cup of coffee around the world:
Havana, Cuba - With its homegrown beans and espresso-sized cups you can't go wrong indulging in a cup from Havana.
Melbourne, Australia - Coffee is an integral part of the city's social scene, so you won't have to go far to find a delicious cup of java. There are cafes on almost every street corner.
Istanbul, Turkey - Turkish coffee is served as a thick brew. It isn't your average cup of coffee, but it's still delicious.
Seattle, Washington - Overly abundant in coffee and the land of the first Starbucks, Seattle has become known for many different coffee shops.
The Bottom Line
A daily routine for some, or an opportunity to catch up with friends for others, a cup of coffee means different things to many different people. Some will argue that the more you pay for coffee the better it will taste and those people are on the hunt for the best brewed cup of coffee available. Conversely, others are quite content paying for their coffee with pocket change. Regardless of what you prefer, there are many alternatives all around the world. With certain coffees priced in the double-digits for a single cup, it has to make you wonder if it is really worth the cost. One thing is for sure though, coffee's popularity has made it a global commodity.
More From Investopedia